From consuming piles of kale to exhausting exercise, many folks believe all healthy aging measures are decidedly unpleasant. But what if simply eating an array of flavorful, nutrient rich foods could fight the effects of time? Here are 10 foods that will get you started on the road to healthy aging. And we are betting that your taste buds will approve, as well!
These are the superstars of the fruit world. They get their color from pigments called anthocyanins that offer antioxidant support and cognitive benefits. These berries promote good memory and can actually improve memory in some cases. They also are an excellent source of bone-healthy vitamin K and very good source of free radical-scavenging vitamin C and manganese. For more information, see Three Good Reasons to Get the Blues
Vampire jokes aside, garlic can protect us in many ways. It contains sulfur compounds that may protect cells from cancer, relax blood vessels and improve cardiovascular health. Researchers believe garlic eases oxidant of LDL cholesterol, promotes healthy blood flow, supports normalized blood pressure and boosts antioxidant levels.
- Green Tea
Part of healthy aging is maintaining a healthy weight and there is promising news about green tea. It’s high in EGCG, which activates thermogenesis, which helps your body burn calories faster. Additionally, green tea is full of antioxidants, which ups the anti-aging ante even more! For more information, see Just Your Cup of Tea
This versatile ingredient contains lactobacillus, a probiotic demonstrated to have positive effects on the health of the digestive system, as well as the immune system. Yogurt is rich in calcium, phosphorus, riboflavin-vitamin B2 and iodine. It’s also rich in vitamin B12, zinc and protein.
- Flax Seed
Mother Nature’s proof that good things come in small packages. In fact, some refer to this tiny seed as the most powerful plant food on the planet. There’s some evidence that it may help reduce your risk of heart disease, cancer, stroke and diabetes. An easy addition to your morning cereal, muffins or even a smoothie, flax seed contains omega-3 essential fatty acids, “good” fats and lignans, which offer antioxidant benefits.
Almonds are high in monounsaturated fats, the same type of health-promoting fats found in olive oil, which have been associated with reduced risk of heart disease. Additionally, almonds have a high protein concentration. A quarter-cup contains 7.62 grams—more protein than is provided by the typical egg, which contains 5.54 grams.
- Olive Oil
This type of oil contains numerous antioxidant polyphenols in addition to monounsaturated oleic acid. Both help support fat metabolism and cardiovascular health. Studies suggest a healthy combo of olive oil and fish oil (omega 3s) can work together in maintaining a pro-inflammatory/anti-inflammatory balance.
- Dark Chocolate
Dark chocolate is packed with a variety of powerful health benefits. Quality dark chocolate with a high cocoa content is not only nutritious, this sweet treat is loaded with soluble fiber and minerals, like magnesium, copper, and iron. In addition, various compounds found in dark chocolate have cancer-fighting properties. The ingredients found in dark chocolate may also help fight symptoms of chronic fatigue and improve mood. A recent discovery cites dark chocolate also has anti-aging properties to help people look decades younger.
Coffee gets a bad rap, but it’s not as bad as you might think. The problem is what you put in your coffee — cream and sugar. Some data suggests coffee drinkers have less of a chance of dying from heart disease. Need another reason to enjoy a cup of joe? It may also lower the risk of type 2 diabetes and Parkinson’s disease.
This leafy green is a true nutrient powerhouse — and it’s easy to add to foods like scrambled eggs, pasta, as the base of a salad, or even smoothies. Spinach is rich in lutein, which has been shown to have anti-aging properties.